Contemporary business conditions imposed the use of modern Internet technologies to all companies aiming to achieve good results and gain competitive advantage. The most important among them is the use of Web 2.0 technologies. These technologies represent an integral part of any marketing strategy in the future. The most essential is communication with customers by using modern social networks, which is the topic that will be discussed in this essay.
According to Zwass (2016), Information Systems should provide support in the corporate business in terms of supply chain management, achieving optimal organizational model in doing business, improving relations with the customers, achieving a better competitive position in the market (para. 1). These systems can provide support in the decision making processes and support for the business analytics process as well. The use of information system simplifies daily operations by consolidating all data necessary for the current operations in terms of monitoring of operations, and business analysis of the company. Information systems provide easier it insight into current operations and business decisions-making.
Modern information systems, used by companies and their business results are closely related. Kroenke and Hooper (2011) describe the importance of information systems in gaining competitive advantage, saying that there are three ways to do that: by developing new products and services, improving current products and services or finding a way to differentiate from other competitors (p. 70). Lehtimäki et al. (2009) explain that developing efficient information system can help the company to maintain and improve some of five defined competitive strategies: cost leadership, differentiation, innovation, growth, and alliance for gaining competitive advantage (p. 51). One of the good examples is computer technology company Dell achieving cost leadership by building information system for sharing information with suppliers and customers. By enabling a quick flow of an information between all relevant participants in the manufacturing process Dell made huge savings in time and money (Manufacturing and Technology News, 1998).
Internet and Web 2.0 Technologies
The Internet is probably the most significant phenomenon in terms of creating a new, global environment for business and social interaction. New information technologies, incurred as a result of the Internet development made it possible to overcome almost all hitherto known communication barriers. According to Leiner et al. by one of the probably most comprehensive definitions, the Internet is a mean for information spreading and broadcasting all over the world, thus creating a global environment and overcoming problems such as geographical barriers and increasing use of various online tools and social integration (p. 22).
Extremely rapid development and growth of the representation of Internet technologies have a huge impact on the modern business organization. In comparison with traditional organizations from the previous period, characterized by slow acceptance and adoption of the changes and improvements, Internet business culture is agile, fast and susceptible to new solutions. A quick exchange of information and their proper use is the key to successful business in the modern business environment. The emergence of e-commerce, web 2. 0 technologies, business collaboration, and globalization are some results of the increasing role that the Internet has in contemporary life and business. In this essay, I will discuss and try to critically analyze the way that Internet influenced in the corporate business environment and the implication of Internet on the strategic competitive advantage.
In a short time, with its services widespread all over the world Internet brought dramatic changes in the modern corporate business environment. Thanks to the mass of innovative technologies competitive rivalry have become more powerful than ever and new companies could enter the market easier than before. In addition, according to Laudon and Laudon (2015) as the customers awareness and power raised, opportunities for the company's revenues have been decreasing. Furthermore, these authors go on and say that the Internet has led to the extinction of some job types and to the creation of new markets and new types of jobs (p. 104).
Web 2.0 technologies changed the way how companies run their businesses and how they communicate with their customers. Companies are exposed to conditions of increased global competition and regardless of the activity they are involved in, the implementation of Web 2.0 technology is becoming one of the reasons that distinguish successful companies from those unsuccessful. Web 2.0 was created by merging certain elements which are warmly welcomed by those users which usually include: blogs, wikis, social networks, and often use of multimedia (The Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, 2008).
From the point of company's marketing activities, the highest level of importance is given to blogs, wikis, and social networks. Blogs are a form of personal web pages, with frequent changes of content in which an individual puts information about themselves or a topic that is the subject of his interest (Baker and Moore, 2008, p.81). When it comes to blogs, it is important to mention that they promote the creative, critical and socially-oriented way of thinking. Wikis
are a large number of interlinked web pages, easy to access and make changes to the content. Unlike a blog where changing content is disabled for everyone except the author, wikis offer the opportunity for every visitor to become an active participant in the creation of a new layout and content of specific pages. At the very beginning of the development, social networks provided the exchange of multimedia content by individuals and availability of this content to the public, and Youtube is the most popular example. In the next stage, the dominant social networks were developed: FaceBook, Twitter, LinkedIn and others.
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